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Eulogy for Mac Elliot – August 12, 2023
Macs eulogy was prepared through input from his children, grandchildren and the notes he prepared
himself for his funeral a few years back. He was always looking ahead and well prepared for the end.
The narrative may change from one person to another and is admittedly long as might be expected from a life
93 years long. Dad was born June 14, 1930 at Mary Moore’s Maternity hospital in Owen Sound. He first lived in an
apartment behind Bill and Katy’s/Bob and Carols hardware store/the Pie Company in Williamsford, then
up the street to the “mill house.” In 1939 they moved to the Grandpa Al’s cottage type house built by Bill
and Herb Heimbecker.  Dad did his schooling in Williamsford, Chatsworth, and Owen Sound for grade 13. Early memories included Bob Kuglan and Kelly Scholtz often having a light lunch of cereal, or bread and honey after school on the veranda of the red mill house. He recalled playing softball in a field just north of Negro creek off highway
6 in Drave’s field where a sawmill sits today. One of his happiest times as a teenager was skating outdoors
with friends at Hanson’s flats. 
Dad’s first jobs as a teenager were feeding the hammer-mill at uncle Cam’s grist mill; taking in hay at Uncle Bill and Aunt Bella McBride’s Desboro farm; and, as a bee keeper in Owen Sound. His first full time job was in 1947 at the Bank of Montreal in Chatsworth. With BMO he moved on to Elora and then
Fort Erie, where he met mom a BMO customer. They were married in 1952. Next they moved to Gore Bay
on the Manitoulin, where Marg and Tom were born, and finally on to Perth. In 1959, fearing a move into
Toronto, dad left the bank and returned to the family milling tradition taking a job at the Milton Milling
Company. After that, he was the first accountant at Milton District Hospital. Marie was born in 1963.
Dad and mom remained in Milton until 1995 when they retired to dad’s family home in Williamsford. In
Williamsford, dad was a volunteer driver taking people to medical appointments, shopping or banking
anywhere from London to Owen Sound. They lived in Williamsford until 2016, when well into their 80s, they
moved to the Summit Place apartments in Owen Sound.  This was the skeleton of dad’s life where he
developed the values and good nature that made dad who he was. The cornerstones of dad’s life were
Family, Faith, Friends and Travel. 
Family. Family was very important to dad, be it mom,
their children, grandchildren, great grandchild; his sister Marie and her family; mom’s siblings and their
families; and his cousins. While frequently in dog house with mom, his love for
her was everlasting. Their journey of 69 years together was a testament to patience, commitment, love,
shared values, and growing old together. It was especially tough for dad when he and mom were
separated first by Covid, and then by mom’s passing. Kelsey tells us dad and moms love for each other was
the foundation and an example of what a real relationship should look like.
Dad travelled across Canada east to west, and south to north, into the US, and across the pond to spend
time with family. He supported family with advice, gifts, money and countless trips to: get ice cream (many,
many, trips); go to Canada’s Wonderland; a wildlife park; or the beach or lake. Grandpa was always up for
fun with the grandkids, going down a waterslide at Niagara Falls on his 80 th birthday party as one example.
There was never a time his grandchildren did not feel his love and support. He had a zest for life and loved

to include his grandchildren in whatever adventure he had planned; whether it was proudly introducing us to
his friends, or making an excuse to talk us up to strangers every chance he got. 
Grandpa's genuine interest in our lives was unwavering. He was always eager to hear what we
were up to, and what we had planned next. His questions revealed his deep curiosity and interest in
our lives. His love was so obvious even outsiders could see it. Courtney will always remember the time
she was walking with her grandpa into McDonald’s (to get ice cream of course) when a stranger stopped her
and said "now that's a man with a twinkle in his eye; you are very lucky to have a happy genuine man like
that in your life." Grandpa’s grandchildren will always be grateful for the time they had with him. Not
everyone gets blessed with a man like Mac in their life, but thank goodness they did.
Faith. Dad’s faith accompanied him throughout his life and he was well prepared to go and meet his maker.
He was generous with his time and financial support to his church. Dad was an elder, treasurer and member
of the choir at Knox Presbyterian church in Milton and Latona Presbyterian church in Dornoch. 

Friends. Dad taught us the importance of staying in touch with friends through life, from youth to old age.
Growing up we rarely spent a weekend at home, always touring Ontario to reconnect with friends be it
through camping, enjoying cottages, or sharing meals, laughs and stories in their homes or at a nearby
In his notes dad mentioned several of the “buddies”
and friends important in his life. He grew up with Herb
McComb and Wil McKay and kept in touch with them
all his life, a friendship over 85 years long. Harold
Rourke, his brother Ken, Joe Heft and dad spent many
a Saturday night in Rourke’s kitchen, playing euchre
and listening to Foster Hewitt broadcasting Maple Leaf
hockey games. Dad was in a band with Jim Baker, Art
Routenburg, Sylvia Davidson and sometimes Bob
Richardson. Bonar and Donna Blair, the Deans and
Convoys were friends we often visited from Perth. Dad
always spoke fondly of Manitouliner Stan Gordon, his
traveling partner to visit Tom at Nahanni, and Ron
Knight, who shared his love of traditional country
music (not that new age Chris Stapleton/Brad Kissel
stuff). He mentioned close friends Jim and Jessie
Schofield, Dave and Joyce Lockie, and the many
elders and friends from Knox church in Milton.

It was difficult for dad as so many of his friends
passed on. He missed their visits and hearing from
them, as his world got smaller and smaller. 
Travel. Dad enjoyed traveling to places new and old,
far and wide. His adventures took them to England
and Ireland. He spent 6 months in Lusaka, Africa to
develop and train staff in a new hospital accounting
system. He once drove and delivered a school bus to
Manitoba. He and mom went to the Yukon 4 times;
Nashville 3 times; square danced in Halifax, Winnipeg,
Edmonton, Calgary, Detroit and Milwaukee; and to
Field, Nanaimo and Missoula Montana. Kelsey said
she was forever grateful to grandpa for inheriting his
sense of travel adventure. 
If dad had a choice of a direct or a back road route
somewhere, it was usually the back road route that
was chosen, much to our dismay as kids. That said,
we all have memories up speeding up those steep
back road hills to seemingly catch air at the top and
the butterflies this brought. In the old days, dad would
stop on the road between Holland Center and
Williamsford, attach our toboggan to the back bumper
and have mom pull dad and us on the toboggan, snow
and exhaust flying in our faces. Not something anyone
would do today, but oh what fun back then.

Dad had nuance’s too many to mention. He could add
numbers in his head faster than a calculator. He
counted church collections at lightning speed amazing
many, and he kept this skill to the very end. In long
term care, he was asked to count backwards from 100
by 7s out loud. He quickly got to 58 before they said
he could stop, while Tom and Marie were still
struggling to get to 86.Try it sometime and you’ll see
how challenging this is.
Dad was especially proud of his Grey Bruce roots, and
loved to share its uniqueness with others. Kelsey
speaks to witnessing grandpa's excitement and
passion for the area through her then husband, Chris.
With infectious enthusiasm Grandpa took Chris, who
had never been to Ontario before, on a local tour. Out
the door we went on a chilly March afternoon; first a
stop at the Mill restaurant to see his childhood graffiti;
then the Pie Company for a delicious piece of
homemade pie with ice cream (of course); and finally
to a local sugar shack so Chris could see the “real
Canadian process” of making maple syrup. Grandpa's
role as a tour guide revealed the depth of his
connection to the area he held so dear to his heart. 
Dad had old school bluntness and was forever getting
himself in trouble for saying what he thought without

thinking. Never purposely mean or malicious, he
simply spoke what came to mind. Courtney said when
grandpa did find himself in hot water it was nothing
that couldn't be solved with a trip to the ice cream
Dad had a habit of leaving the kitchen cupboards
doors wide open, despite mom’s taped up signs
emphatically stating Please close the door!!! You had
to keep your head up to avoid bumping into them
whether you were in their Williamsford or Owen Sound
homes. Maybe this was why they had sliding cupboard
doors in Milton. You could follow dad and close the
doors right behind him, but in no time they’d be wide
open again.
Dad’s appetite was pretty well known, much like
Grandpa Al. With Grandpa, we remember having to
keep deserts well out of reach because he was
diabetic. In a wheelchair, Grandpa’s arm would sneak
out at lightning speed to grab an unattended desert if
mom or Aunt Marie weren’t watching. A short time ago
at the Elliot picnic, Marie and dad arrived after the
meal for a visit. As he was being wheeled past the left
over dessert table, without even slowing down, and
with the same lightning speed as grandpa, dad
snatched a rice Krispy square. The apple didn’t fall far
from the tree.

While not a hunter or fisherman, Dad still enjoyed
loved the outdoors getting out on hikes when he could.
He did have the infamous misadventure at Misery Bay
on the Manitoulin where he found himself stuck alone
overnight in a swamp; arms pulled in his shirt and
mosquitoes everywhere. The next morning when
everyone was sick with worry, and as dogs, searchers
and aircraft were called in, dad found his way out to
the road and a nearby home. His priority was finding
his way to breakfast rather than letting mom and
friends know he was safe. Mom was thankful dad was
ok, but ready to kill him at the same time. Dad refused
to say he was lost. He said he knew where he was
and simply ran out of time to find his way out before
nightfall. Everyone else thought otherwise. Needless
to say a generous donation went out to the search and
rescue team.
Dad was very frustrated towards the end that he
wasn’t able to do the things as he used to, and he
missed mom dearly. He’s with mom, Marg and Grant
now; free of pain and his physical limitations and
challenges. Our loss is dads’ gain. 
There are many people to thank for calling, visiting,
getting dad to appointments, shopping, and providing
him spiritual advice and support over the last few
years. You know who you are. You provided us and

our families’ peace of mind, knowing you were there
and a phone call away, when we couldn’t be there
ourselves. We will be forever thankful to Will who was
with dad during those final moments as he crossed
over to be with mom. Thank you, and thank you again.
We’d like to close with a few words paraphrased from
dad and Stuart Maclean, a favourite of dads.  “As you
age, your job becomes one of looking after yourself
and each other. Dad would want you to know that
today isn’t about saying goodbye; it’s just so long for
He hopes you will remember him fondly.”
He didn’t have to worry about that, as this is what we
read in some of the early tributes: “always kind,
cheerful and thoughtful; a good man, an extraordinary
man, one of the greats, always caring and interested
in people, a true gem, and a kind generous man who
made a difference for so many. He held a special
place in many people hearts. “
Thank you again.
The family

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